FAIRWAY, KS (KCTV) -- We just couldn’t shake the cloudy, gloomy skies on Sunday and it looks like a new week brings several chances of rain. The first chance of rain this week moves in just before sunrise Monday morning. Nothing heavy, but it might rain lightly for about five hours Monday morning. The timeline appears to be between 5AM and 10 AM but if you live east of Kansas City you might be dealing with light rain through noon. Below is a snapshot from Monday morning. The graphics simulates what Live Power Doppler will look like at 6AM.
You can see at 6AM there is still a large area of light rain yet to move into KC. Computer guidance suggests this area of rain will last into the late morning across much of the area. The first round of rain will drop about a quarter of an inch of rain on the metro and surrounding counties. But this is just the start of the rain chances for the week. A few more scattered showers may develop late Monday afternoon or Monday evening but a better, widespread chance of rain will move in Wednesday and again Thursday. The storm that will bring us more is visible on our satellite/radar loop. It’s spinning off the coast of California.
The storm will drop into southern California between Sunday night and Wednesday morning. The graphic below depicts where the storm will be Wednesday morning. The blue shaded areas highlight strong winds at around 20-thousand feet or halfway up through the atmosphere. These winds are important because the upper level winds will transport moisture that eventually falls as rain into the middle of the country.
Remember that what happens aloft is often reflected down on the surface of the earth. In this case, the upper level storm will help to form a surface storm. A somewhat strong area of low pressure that you can see on the map below. At the same time, back up 20,000 feet, the upper level winds act as a pipeline, pumping moisture into the central and southern plains from the Pacific Ocean. The result a rainy Wednesday with the potential for a half-inch to three quarters inch of rain.
The upper level storm will slowly move toward the Mid-West bringing with it another chance of rain and even thunderstorms on Thursday. This third round of rain could bring another inch of rain, maybe even more to our area during the day Thursday. Temperatures on Thursday could warm to near 70. That means an increase in instability and that could lead to thunderstorms across the southern and central plains. Here’s the forecast surface map valid for Thursday at noon.
The lines you see on the above graphic are called isobars or lines of equal barometric pressure. The lines are there so you can better get a feel for the dynamics of this storm. It will bring in abundant moisture from the Gulf of Mexico and at the same time wrap some very cold air into the storm across Wyoming, Utah and northern Colorado. Since the storm will be moving toward the Great Lakes, we do not expect any accumulating snow here in Kansas City but it will turn a lot colder during the day Friday. Friday afternoon might include temperatures in the 30s with a blustery north wind adding a biting chill to the air. Again, this storm might produce an inch or more of rain. The graphic below shows you how much rain could fall between Monday morning and Thursday night.
That is a wet week. The normal rainfall for March is around 2.37 inches. We are sitting at 2.33 inches of rain so far this month. It’s not out of the realm of possibility that we double that this week. Talk about your rainy weeks. We’ve got one headed our way.